What Do You Bring to a Blog Conference?

Rachelle Chase Jewelry

I’m getting ready to speak at three conferences in a row about blogging and WordPress, and something Rachelle Chase said at a conference we spoke at recently keeps popping up in my head. She spoke about techniques for making yourself memorable that she uses when she meets people who can help her with her business and blog.

Rachelle Chase JewelryShe contracted with a local artist to create autographed unique artwork in the form of a necklace and travel mirror. Decorated with text from her books and quotes about her books and blog, she sells them on her blog, but also gives them away to journalists and interview subjects as “reminders” of who she is and what she does. They are unusual and memorable, and say a lot about her, her work, and her blog.
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Blogging the Olympic Games

Olympic Games Rings and torch

Olympic Games Rings and torchWhen the international Olympic Games begin, everyone has an opinion on who will win, who should have won, and anything and everything Olympic. As the Olympic Games get closer, I thought I’d research some information to help you blog about the upcoming games in China.

There are a lot of stories and angles to be found on the Olympic Games, from historical perspectives and comparisons to personal interest stories such as the impact of the games on the communities in which they are held, and how the infrastructure and changes brought about by the games help or hinder the community years later. If you are looking for Olympic material for your blog, think about local human interest stories such as a community member who was in the Olympics or traveled to see the Olympics and get their inside story. The Olympics impacts everyone everywhere, so there is an Olympic story around every corner.

The official sites for the upcoming Olympic Games include:
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nextMEDIA: Online and Mobile Media

This is continuing coverage of the nextMEDIA conference in Toronto. To find all the posts related to nextMEDIA, check out Splashpress’ Blog

The second session I attended was the Online and Mobile Media session, which was a panel discussion moderated by Robert Montgomery, CEO of Achilles Media.

In the panel were Kurt Kratchman, Chief Strategy Officer of Schematic, John Hadi, CEO of Brand in Hand, and Jeffrey Stier, Director of Business Growth at J. Walter Thompson’s Sector 7.

Early on, it was said that this session should have been entitled, “show me the money”, as it focused on how and why people are monetizing digital media.

The discussion started off with how television has moved to the web, with ABC being the first to jump on board with both feet and present full episodes via their website. It was an aggressive move for ABC, but they saw a return of fifteen times their investment in only nine months.

The online advertising platform has allowed them to create interactive, and interesting advertising that is nearly a website on top of the video.

It reminded me of intrusive advertising in the past, but I believe, unlike with most text content, users will be willing to deal with such advertising to enjoy their favourite television and video programming online.

What they did say though is that putting a thirty second spot, in the middle of a video is no good, as users don’t connect with the advertisement, and find it annoying.

This is something well known to most people though, as even television users continue to shun the thirty second spot, by skipping it on their TiVo like devices.

It was also noted that the web is better for advertisers than many other mediums as you could control what time of day things are show, as well as making sure to push each user to local contacts, distributors and dealers.

Another point that resonated well with me was that the “pay for download model is basically dead” including subscription models. Personally, I think what Revision3 did with their members getting premiere access, and bonus features is very close to a normal subscription option, but they found a way to make it work. I think other video services, could also do something in this space to innovate, and I look forward to seeing what happens over the coming years.

In the sixties, you could reach 80% of the population by putting a sixty second advertisement on the top three television networks. Today, it would take 120 prime time commercials to produce a similar result.

Virtually no one today is able provide any form of playback, or details from the ads they have seen without some form of aide, be it visual or otherwise.

Basically, it looked to me like all of these people knew that the online space, be it video or otherwise is very exciting, and while they are trying to tap the audience, they are having difficulty. They showed some great promotions and marketing campaigns they have tried, that produced amazing results, but it doesn’t seem like there is any formula for advertising online to gain a certain minimum response.

The takeaway from this session really seemed to be that we should all be tring various things out, producing ideas on the web can be fairly inexpensive, and one of them might just go viral, taking the message to a much larger audience than most expensive, structured, online campaigns.

Blogging For Boobs

Je Maverick of Web for Humanity recently shared with us his latest campaign to raise awareness of breast cancer: Blogging for Boobs. October, after all, is breast cancer awareness month, and Web for Humanity thinks blogging is a great way to let people know about the importance of detection and treatment.

In an attempt to spread this awareness (with the added hope of raising a mountain of cash to aid breast cancer researchers in their hunt for a cure), myself and some colleagues in favour of the idea have chosen to put on a blogging event.

Blogging For Boobs is an event that is hinged around the need to make people aware that they should regularly self-examine breasts for lumps or growths. Whilst men are susceptible to developing cancer of the breasts and should also self-examine, the much larger percentage of those afflicted with the cancer are women. Globally, approximately 1.5 million women are diagnosed with breast cancer each year.

The online event will be held on October 28th, and bloggers are encouraged to write about anything that can raise awareness over the matter.

[W]hile breast cancer awareness is the topic that we are lending our support to, the topic does not necessarily have to be about breast cancer. Blogging in support of breast cancer awareness, no matter what the subject, will help us to create a much needed awareness network in order to promote the cause.

We would like to see as many personal anecdotes and stories on the subject, so if you have these to tell then we would appreciate your contribution. Please remember to keep all posts tasteful.

You can send email to boobs (at) webforhumanity.org for entries and for other inquiries. Je’s blog also has avatars, badges and buttons you can add to your blog if you wish to participate.

$54K Of Prizes Wraps Up — Courtesy Of ProBlogger

You may or may not have heard that Darren Rowse of Problogger.net is celebrating his blog’s birthday this week. If you haven’t, then it may interest you to know that Darren is has russeled up over 100 sponsors to give away over $54, 000 in prizes in rotating contests this past week ending 8pm October 8th.

If you’ve missed out, you still have time as Problogger is having a bunch of rotating contests every 8 hours. He’s given away a whole bunch of art / photography swag, followed by some great parenting-related prizes, to some fantastic holiday packages (3 night stay in Walt Disney World?). And that’s not to mention a great prize that allows you to give away $1000 to your charity of choice (and its still going on).

At the time of this writing, there’s a computer and gaming related prize give-away, and there are three more 8 hour prize related give aways planned (including a 24h one).

If you’re looking to score some free swag this weekend, all it takes is for you to leave a comment (although you should read the instructions, because sometimes they need to you to comment on something specifically). Since there are around 100 comments per post (I suspect the computer and gaming one is going to be a lot more though) and there are usually 4-6 prizes per give-away, you can predict your chances.

Good luck!

Writing Tips for Blog Action Day

Yesterday, I challenged myself and you to consider what you are going to blog about on , October 15, 2007. Really getting into the spirit of things, Joanna Young on Pelf’s The Giving Hands has taken this idea even further with 15 days of blog posts on the environment, leading up to October 15.

The post that caught my attention was 10 Ways Our Words Can Make A Difference, a brilliant set of tips for making your words count on your blog:

  1. Write like a human being.
  2. Keep it simple.
  3. Use plain words.
  4. Make it specific.
  5. Tell stories.
  6. Ask questions.
  7. Use the language of possibility.
  8. Connect with others.
  9. Focus on your positive intention.
  10. Make a choice.

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Have You Found Your Blog Topic for Blog Action Day – October 15

is October 15, and the founders of the event are asking bloggers around the world to blog on the topic of the environment.

Similar to the April 30, Day of Silence, when many bloggers around the world didn’t publish anything but a sign honoring the day in protest of personal violence, Blog Action Day asks you to turn your blog into action by blogging about the environment on that day. You can choose any topic, as long as it has to do with environmental issues.

The idea behind Blog Action Day is to use the power of united voices to call attention to an issue. This year, Blog Action Day is dedicated to the environment. Next year, they may have a different subject.

With millions of bloggers writing about the environment, readers can’t help but be exposed to the news and information just from the numbers. This type of unified action often speaks louder than the small chorus.
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Blogathon Tips: Blogathon 2007 July 28

Blogathon logo

The annual Blogathon will be July 28, 2007. Are you ready?

The Blogathon is an annual event where bloggers around the world blog publish a blog post every 30 minutes for 24 hours and raise money for their favorite charities while they are blogging.

Blogathon logoLast year, Willos Web raised USD $7,737.00 for their charity. An Indian Summer was honored as the Best Non-Fiction Blog during the Blogathon for blogging about her cancer. So You Want to Murder a Racecar Driver… got a lot of attention and won the Best Fiction Writing for their blog mystery novel. The Best Food Blog in the Blogathon went to In The Kitchen With Moozie, showing you a little of the amazing diversity of all the different bloggers involved. This year, the number of blogging participants is expected to be bigger than ever.

I’ve helped out a lot of bloggers during past Blogathons, which resulted in How Not to Blog in a Blogathon Blog. So I thought I’d share some tips to help you prepare for this year’s Blogathon.
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April 30: A Day of Silence on the Blogosphere

According to OneDayBlogSilence.com:

Silence can say more then a thousand words.

This day shall unite us all about this unbelievable painful & shocking event and show some respect and love to those who lost their loved ones.

On April 30th 2007, the Blogosphere will hold a One-Day Blog Silence in honor towards the victims of Virginia. 33 died at the US college massacre.

The Blogosphere is in deep mourning.

All you have to do is spread the word about it and post the graphic on your blog on 30th April 2007. No words and no comments. Just respect and empathy.

The Relationship Conference: Building Blogs Through Interaction

Over the past two weeks, I’ve been sharing tips and techniques with you about expanding your blogging relationships. This is the theme of the upcoming Successful and Outstanding Blogger Conference in Chicago, May 11-12, 2007, and the Blog Herald is one of the sponsors.

In my announcement of the Successful and Outstanding Blogger Conference (SOBCon2007), I spoke about the many relationships a blogger has with the act of blogging:

  • SOBCon07 Register Now for the eventThe relationship between you and your blog.
  • The relationship between you and your blog’s content.
  • The relationship between you and your blog’s looks and design.
  • The relationship between you and your blog’s statistics.
  • The relationship between you and other bloggers.
  • The relationship between you and your blogging goals.
  • The relationship between you and your blog brand.
  • The relationship between you and your readers.
  • The relationship between you and your potential readers.

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